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Japan Authorities Admit Deadly MOX Plutonium Reactor Is Leaking

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March 25, 2011: Paul Joseph Watson / Prison Planet.com – March 25, 2011

While the mass media has all but dropped its interest in the Fukushima crisis to focus on Libya and meaningless side-issues like the death of Elizabeth Taylor, the nuclear nightmare only worsens, as Japanese authorities admit that reactor number 3, which is the only reactor to contain MOX plutonium, is now leaking.

“Japan’s nuclear regulator said one reactor core at the quake-damaged Fukushima Dai-Ichi power plant may be cracked and leaking radiation,” reports Bloomberg.

“It’s very possible that there has been some kind of leak at the No. 3 reactor,” Hidehiko Nishiyama, a spokesman at the Japan Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said in Tokyo today. While radioactive water at the unit most likely escaped from the reactor core, it also could have originated from spent fuel pools stored atop the reactor, he said.”

The water now leaking from reactor number 3 has radiation levels 10,000 times above the level of normal reactor water. Yesterday, two Fukushima technicians received instant radioactive burns when they stepped in the puddle of water, as it burned right through their boots.

The leakage of plutonium and uranium from reactor number 3 is the nightmare scenario that many experts predicted would turn the situation at Fukushima from a crisis to a catastrophe.

The dire consequences of any major leak in reactor number 3 are exemplified by the fact that 4,000 tons of water have been dumped on the reactor, five times more than any of the other five units.

Reactor number 3 runs on MOX or Mixed Oxide fuel, a mixture of plutonium and uranium. Plutonium is the most deadly radioactive isotope known to man, and MOX is two million times more deadly than normal enriched uranium. The Half-life of Plutonium-239 in MOX is 24,000 years and just a few milligrams of P-239 escaping in a smoke plume will contaminate soil for tens of thousands of years.

On March 14, reactor number 3 was hit with a massive explosion that sent debris hurtling hundreds of feet into the air in an orange fireball. Authorities claimed that the explosion was caused by a build up of hydrogen pressure and that the blast did not damage the reactor containment unit. Is the damage to the reactor only recent, or have the Japanese been covering up the leak for almost two weeks since the explosion?

According to the Nuclear Information Resource Center (NIRS), “In the event of such accidents (involving the accidental release of MOX), if the ICRP (International Commission on Radiological Protection) recommendations for general public exposure were adhered to, only about one mg of plutonium may be released from a MOX facility to the environment. As a comparison, in [sic] uranium fabrication facility, 2kg (2,000,000 mg) of uranium could be released in the same radiation exposure.”

In the case of the 1986 Chernobyl disaster, the vast majority of the plutonium was not released during the explosion and subsequent fire.

As part of the bizarre sweeping apathy that the mass media has cultivated over the last week surrounding the Fukushima crisis, the threat of MOX plutonium has been completely downplayed.

Similarly, the longer the crisis drags on and the worse it gets, the less the media pays attention, despite disturbing reports of yellow rain now falling in Tokyo and surrounding areas. Just like the victims of Chernobyl, Japanese authorities are telling the people that the substance is merely pollen.

Radiation emitted by the Fukushima reactors is already approaching Chernobyl levels. “Iodine-131 is being released at daily levels 73 per cent of those seen after the 1986 disaster. The daily amount of caesium-137 released from Fukushima Daiichi is around 60 per cent of the amount released from Chernobyl,” reports the New Scientist.

According to a new study by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH), “Nearly 25 years after the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine, exposure to radioactive iodine-131(I-131, a radioactive isotope) from fallout may be responsible for thyroid cancers that are still occurring among people who lived in the Chernobyl area and were children or adolescents at the time of the accident.”

Despite UN and World Health Organization studies that claim Chernobyl led to a maximum of 9,000 deaths and 200,000 cases of radiation sickness, more contemporary studies have shown that nearly a million people have been killed from cancers caused by the disaster over the course of the last 25 years.

Detailed Close-Up Aerial Video Of Wrecked Reactors At Fukushima

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: I regret never visiting Japan in the past, as it’s now destined a nuclear wasteland as the radioactive isotopes continue their journey to North America to poison generations… – SJH

Link to original article below…

http://www.prisonplanet.com/japanese-authorities-admit-deadly-mox-plutonium-reactor-is-leaking.html

Fukushima Radiation Release Surpasses 1986 Chernobyl Disaster?

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March 24, 2011: Paul Joseph Watson / Prison Planet.com – March 24, 2011

As others have stated, this is “Chernobyl on steroids” with no end in sight! – SJH

The radiation released by the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant already rivals and in one sense exceeds the Chernobyl catastrophe according to Austria’s Central Institute for Meteorology and Geodynamics, even as media spin downplays the severity of the crisis despite the fact that the problems at the plant show no signs of abating.

“The release of two types of radioactive particles in the first 3-4 days of Japan’s nuclear crisis is estimated to have reached 20-50 percent of the amounts from Chernobyl in 10 days, an Austrian expert said on Wednesday,” reports Reuters.

Iodine-131 released in the first 3-4 days of the crisis was about 20 percent of that released from Chernobyl during a ten-day period, whereas the amount of Caesium-137 released amounted to about 50 percent, according to the institute’s Dr Gerhard Wotawa.

Despite the fact that the story appears under the euphemistic Reuters headline, Japan radiation release lower than Chernobyl, as Tyler Durden points out, when you consider the fact that the amount of Caesium-137 released at Fukushima in the first 3-4 days of the crisis amounted to 50% that released by Chernobyl over 10 days, the real run rate of the radiation released at Fukushima is now about 120-150% the figure released by the Chernobyl explosion – and that’s not even factoring in ongoing radiation leaks from Fukushima, which many experts have estimated could go on for much longer.

As the New York Times reported, “Experts….suggest that radioactive releases of steam from the crippled plants could go on for weeks or even months.” Even if Fukushima technicians manage to stop radiation leakage after one month, estimated Caesium-137 emissions would be at least 500 percent more than those released by Chernobyl, whereas iodine-131 levels could be 200 percent worse.

A further complication is the fact that we don’t even know how much if any plutonium emissions have leaked from Fukushima reactor number 3, which runs on MOX or Mixed Oxide fuel, a mixture of plutonium and uranium. Plutonium is the most deadly radioactive isotope known to man, and MOX is two million times more deadly than normal enriched uranium. The Half-life of Plutonium-239 in MOX is 24,000 years and just a few milligrams of P-239 escaping in a smoke plume will contaminate soil for tens of thousands of years.

In the case of Chernobyl, the vast majority of the plutonium was not released during the explosion and subsequent fire. Japanese authorities and the establishment media seem reticent to even discuss the potential release of plutonium from reactor number 3 at Fukushima.

“The fact that radiation releases are approaching the level they did in Chernobyl is a cause for concern, a sign of the severity of the accident that’s already taken place,” said Edwin Lyman, senior scientist at the U.S.-based Union of Concerned Scientists Global Security Program, especially given the way Chernobyl exploded.”

The only two factors that have really prevented the Fukushima crisis from becoming as severe as Chernobyl thus far are firstly that, unlike in the case of Chernobyl, residents within the exclusion zone were quickly evacuated, and secondly, most of the radiation from Fukushima has been dispersed over the Pacific Ocean, whereas Chernobyl fallout blanketed the land mass of Europe.

However, at least with Chernobyl the full impact of the disaster was known and its threat was able to be quantified quickly. Fukushima has been burning for 2 weeks and shows no sign of abating. Given the fact that one type of radiation reached 20% and the other over 50% of Chernobyl within days, Fukushima is on course to be worse than the 1986 disaster in the long term.

As Tyler Durden asks, “How soon until the first indications of radiation poisoning start appearing. Somehow we are confident we will not find out until years from now when all the truth surrounding this incident is finally declassified.”

Indeed, despite UN and World Health Organization studies that claim Chernobyl led to a maximum of 9,000 deaths and 200,000 cases of radiation sickness, more contemporary studies have shown that nearly a million people have been killed from cancers caused by the disaster over the course of the last 25 years.

If radiation releases from Fukushima are being underreported by authorities, as they were with Chernobyl, and a heap of evidence suggests they are, then we won’t know the full impact of the disaster until decades have passed.

Despite the massive threat Fukushima poses to the food supply, as the U.S. and other countries ban dairy and vegetable imports from farms contaminated by the radiation release, U.S. health authorities and the EPA are still insisting that Americans should not take potassium iodide, even at weaker levels, despite the fact that it is known to protect against thyroid cancer by blocking the absorption of radioactive iodine.

Fears Of Full Meltdown As More Smoke Rising From Fukushima Reactors

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Where are all the spent plutonium MOX fuel rods that were blown sky high when reactor 3 exploded in a mushroom cloud? – SJH 

Link to original article below…

http://www.prisonplanet.com/fukushima-radiation-release-rivals-chernobyl.html

Radioactive Isotope Confirmed In California And Washington State

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March 19, 2011: Tennille Tracy / The Wall Street Journal – March 18, 2011

This is the same EPA that declared the air at Ground Zero was safe to breathe in the wake of 9/11 that has now sickened and killed thousands of Americans! – SJH

WASHINGTON–U.S. officials detected the presence of a radioactive isotope in California on Friday that appeared to come from the Fukushima nuclear-power plant in Japan, but the levels they detected were minuscule–far less than a person would normally receive from the sun, rocks or other natural sources.

U.S. officials say the levels are consistent with their expectations and pose no risk to human health.

The Environmental Protection Agency and the Energy Department said in a statement a radiation monitor in Sacramento, Calif., detected minuscule quantities of the radioactive isotope xenon-133.  The readings validated similar ones from March 16 and 17 taken from monitors in Washington state, they said.

The agencies said the radioactive isotope appears to have come from the Japanese power plant damaged in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami there. Energy Secretary Steven Chu said earlier in the week he believed a “partial meltdown” had occurred at the plant.

The levels detected in California were about 0.1 disintegrations per second per cubic meter of air, a dose rate equal to one-millionth of what a person normally receives from rocks, bricks, the sun and other natural background sources, the statement said. On Tuesday, EPA announced it had deployed additional radiation monitors to Hawaii, Alaska, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands.

RELATED: US Declines To Give Details On Radiation – The Wall Street Journal (March 19, 2011)

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704608504576208840531837916-search.html

Radiation Mega-Storm Forms In The Pacific – March 17, 2011

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Meanwhile, radiation monitors are mysteriously offline (links below) as a massive 2000 mile across mega-storm churns out in the Pacific as it barrels toward North America– SJH 

US West Coast Radiation Monitors Go Offline

http://theintelhub.com/2011/03/19/us-west-coast-radiation-monitor-goes-offline-907-pm-pst/

Look At How Many RadNet Radiation Monitors Are Offline

https://cdxnode64.epa.gov/radnet-public/showMap.do

Link to original article below…

http://blogs.wsj.com/dispatch/2011/03/18/radioactive-isotope-detected-in-california/?mod=google_news_blog

US Government Not To Be Trusted On Dangers Of Radiation Plume

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March 17, 2011: Paul Joseph Watson / Prison Planet.com – March 17, 2011

9/11, Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, Project SHAD, Atomic Soldiers – governments habitually deceive the public on health threats… Given the brazen contempt with which the EPA lied to ground zero workers in telling them that the air was “safe to breathe” on 9/11, government agencies cannot be trusted to give accurate information about the Fukushima radiation plume, which is set to reach California on Friday according to the United Nations.

This is the reason potassium iodide pills and geiger counters have sold out and it goes to the heart of the whole Fukushima catastrophe. Governments worldwide have proven themselves completely deceptive and untrustworthy, which is why no one believes their assurances about “harmless” radiation, and have taken steps to prepare themselves for the worst case scenario.

“A United Nations forecast of the possible movement of the radioactive plume coming from crippled Japanese reactors shows it churning across the Pacific, and touching the Aleutian Islands on Thursday before hitting Southern California late Friday,” reports the New York Times.

“Health and nuclear experts emphasize that radiation in the plume will be diluted as it travels and, at worst, would have extremely minor health consequences in the United States, even if hints of it are ultimately detectable. In a similar way, radiation from the Chernobyl disaster in 1986 spread around the globe and reached the West Coast of the United States in 10 days, its levels measurable but minuscule.”

The same people telling us that the levels are miniscule and the radiation “harmless,” are from the same organizations who assured us that the Chernobyl disaster only killed 9,000 people, when in reality it exposed 550 million Europeans, and 150 to 230 million others in the Northern Hemisphere to notable contamination and led to nearly a million deaths.

Given the fact that Japanese authorities have overseen a clear cover-up of the amount of radiation being spewed by the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant, added to the fact that the EPA and the White House, both of which conspired to engage in a cover-up on 9/11 in claiming that the air was safe to breathe at ground zero (aided by establishment media outlets like the New York Times), which led to chronic illnesses and deaths of thousands of Americans, also cannot be trusted, the fact that the UN is making assurances that the radiation plume will be “harmless” should be treated with the utmost suspicion.

As the Washington Blog notes, “If we could rely on the Japanese and American governments to inform us of any danger, we wouldn’t have to be so vigilant…But given the American government’s cover up of the severity of the BP oil disaster, the health risk to New Yorkers after 9/11, and numerous other health issues, we will have to educate ourselves.”

There are numerous people on the west coast who are streaming continuous live pictures of geiger counters to the Internet. One example is embedded below (link to original article). Normal background radiation can range from 5 CPM to 60 CPM – anything above 100 should raise an alarm.

Assurances that the majority of the radiation plume will disperse over the Pacific Ocean are also glib, given how the Chernobyl radiation cloud smothered most of the northern hemisphere within a week. Remember, experts are calling this crisis “Chernobyl on steroids,” if the worst comes to the worst the radiation cloud could affect the entire globe.

The history surrounding both Three Mile Island and Chernobyl give us a clear warning that governments and “trusted” authorities habitually lie about the threat posed by radiation as part of their supposed effort to “prevent mass panic” amongst the population.

The false claim that there were no “deaths or long-term health effects connected to the accident,” at the Three Mile Island nuclear plant, which is again being parroted by the corporate media, is based on deceptive assurances made at the time by authorities that levels of radiation emitted were harmless.

In reality, cancer rates in children and infants living Dauphin County, where Three Mile Island is located, are significantly higher than the national average. Similarly, the devastating long term health impacts of Chernobyl have been routinely downplayed.

As a 2010 book published by the New York Academy of Sciences documents, “Nearly one million people around the world died from exposure to radiation released by the 1986 nuclear disaster at the Chernobyl reactor.”

The book, written by Alexey Yablokov of the Center for Russian Environmental Policy in Moscow, and Vassily Nesterenko and Alexey Nesterenko of the Institute of Radiation Safety, completely demolishes claims made by the WHO and the IAEA that the disaster led to only 9,000 deaths.

“Drawing upon extensive data, the authors estimate the number of deaths worldwide due to the Chernobyl fallout from 1986 through 2004 was 985,000, a number that has since increased.” Janette Sherman, MD, the physician and toxicologist who edited the book, notes that the consequences of Chernobyl “were far worse than many researchers had believed”.

Numerous governments, including the French government, “deliberately suppressed information about the spread of radioactive fallout.” In parts of France, thyroid cancer surged as the population didn’t take steps to protect itself having believed their government that the radiation cloud was harmless.

The book also reveals how, “Americans also consumed contaminated food imported from nations affected by the disaster. Four years later, 25 percent of imported food was found to be still contaminated.”

Let us not forget either the disgraceful legacy of Project Shad, wherein the US Department of Defense exposed unwitting and unwilling participants to deadly biological and chemical weapons. Similarly, under the atomic soldiers program, US troops were ordered to walk directly into the shockwave of nuclear bombs.

Given the documented history of governments, and particularly the White House, routinely lying to their populations about the severity of health threats, particularly radiation, anyone who believes assurances about the “harmless”-ness of the plume of radiation which will reach the west coast tomorrow is not only foolish, but is putting their own life and the lives of their loved ones at risk.

Watch the video below to get an idea of how Chernobyl impacted the whole of Europe and beyond. The clip tracks the path of the radioactive cloud over the course of 7 days…

Radioactive Cloud Fallout Over Europe From Chernobyl Disaster

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Well, at this point, all I can say is let’s all hope there is a complete and catastrophic meltdown so that most of the rods melt right down into the ground to somewhat contain this… Granted, it sucks for Japan, but that really is the best overall outcome at this critical juncture. – SJH

The New York Times: Animated Forecast For Path Of Radioactive Plume

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/03/16/science/plume-graphic.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=thab1

Link to original article below…

http://www.prisonplanet.com/u-s-government-cannot-be-trusted-on-radiation-plume.html

Pentagon Cover-Up Of Radiation Data At Fukushima Nuclear Plant

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March 17, 2011: Kurt Nimmo / Infowars.com – March 17, 2011

The Japan Times reports the Pentagon will send an unmanned Global Hawk high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft over the deteriorating Fukushima nuclear complex today.

“Photographs taken by the plane equipped with infrared sensors could provide a useful clue to what is occurring inside the reactor buildings, around which high-level radiation has been detected,” the news source reports.

The flight is basically unnecessary and represents a PR spin. Both the Pentagon and the Japanese government know full well the severity of the situation at the Fukushima plant and they are not releasing this information to either the Japanese or American people.

The Pentagon is responsible for developing nuclear technology and has particle detectors, also known as radiation detectors, positioned around the world. The USS George Washington and USS Ronald Reagan, both now parked off Japan, are outfitted with radiation detection technology.

In addition, the radiation can be tracked by the U.S. Air Force’s Constant Phoenix WC-135 jets, which are designed to monitor airborne fallout from nuclear weapons tests.

Constant Phoenix technology was used after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster in Ukraine to sample the air over the Atlantic and was also used to detect seismic events associated with North Korea’s claim of a nuclear test in October 2006 and again in May 2009, the Pentagon told Alan Boyle of MSNBC.

The Constant Phoenix program was established in 1947 by General Dwight D. Eisenhower, ostensibly to detect atomic explosions anywhere in the world. It serves as a collection platform for the Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC) at Patrick AFB, Florida. The 45th Reconnaissance Squadron at Offutt AFB, Nebraska, works closely with AFTAC.

Air sampling missions are routinely conducted over the Far East, Indian Ocean, Bay of Bengal, Mediterranean Sea, the Polar regions, and off the coasts of South America and Africa. Pakistan, India, and North Korea are of particular interest because they have nuclear programs.

Maj. Chad Steffey told the reporter that a Constant Phoenix WC-135 would be sent to sample the air moving over Japan, supposedly in response to a Japanese government request. The planes would be brought from Offutt Air Force Base, Steffey said. A senior U.S. defense official told NBC News that Constant Phoenix’s involvement in the Japanese fiasco was “absolutely” a significant event. “We are using it to help out a nation,” the official said. “It’s significant.”

More PR spin. The Pentagon moved to gauge the threat well before any supposed request by the Japanese government. It deployed its sophisticated technology – and that of the NRC and the NNSA (the National Nuclear Security Administration) – to size up the threat early on. The Pentagon acts on its own. It does not wait for requests from government, including our own Congress.

In the United States, the EPA has a vast array of radiation detection stations. In California alone, there are twelve stations measuring air particulates, real-time gamma, and the contamination of milk and drinking water. It remains to be seen if the EPA will share this data with the American people.

Recall the EPA dispensing misleading information following the false flag attacks of September 11, 2001, telling New Yorkers it was safe to breathe the air when reliable information on air quality was not available.

The Pentagon and the government know full well the extent of this unprecedented disaster — and it is far worse then they are telling us. They are not about to level with the American people, who will find out later this week and in the weeks ahead how severe and life threatening the situation is.

As we reported over the weekend, the CIA’s USAID was dispatched to micromanage the release and spin of information on the disaster. Yoichi Shimatsu, the former editor of the Japan Times Weekly, told CCTV a large scale cover-up is unfolding.

“The CIA, through USAID, is running a disinfo campaign on Japan’s earthquake crippled nuclear facilities for geopolitical reasons. The Japanese people will ultimately suffer, as will millions of other people who happen to be downwind from the stricken plants,” we wrote at the time.

A video of Mr. Shimatsu’s interview was predictably memory holed at YouTube, the video site owned by CIA asset Google.

Official UN Forecast: ‘Diluted’ Radioactive Fallout Heading To US West Coast

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: And how forthright were the Feds concerning the Gulf oil disaster? – SJH 

Link to original article below…

http://www.infowars.com/pentagon-cover-up-of-data-on-fukushima-disaster/

EPA Deploys Mobile Radiation Monitor Stations To U.S. West Coast

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March 16, 2011: Associated Press Editors / Associated Press via Yahoo News – March 16, 2011

Don’t Worry… 🙂 Be Happy! – SJH

SAN FRANCISCO – More radiation monitors are being deployed in the western United States and Pacific territories, as officials seek to mollify public concern over exposure from damaged nuclear plants in Japan, federal environmental regulators said.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency already monitors radiation throughout the area as part of its RadNet system, which measures levels in air, drinking water, milk and rain.

The additional monitors are being deployed in response to the ongoing nuclear crisis in Japan, where emergency workers are attempting to cool overheated reactors damaged by last week’s magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami.

Officials with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said they do not expect harmful radiation levels to reach the U.S. from Japan. “The agency decided out of an abundance of caution to send these deployable monitors in order to get some monitors on the ground closer to Japan,” said Jonathan Edwards, director of EPA’s radiation protection division.

California already has 12 monitoring stations scattered throughout the state that test the air for radiation levels. EPA also has 40 so-called “deployable” monitors that can be moved around in cases of emergency. EPA told The Associated Press it is adding two more stations in Hawaii and two in Guam. In Alaska, officials are setting up three new monitors in Dutch Harbor, Nome and Juneau.

The idea is to get a better geographic spread of monitoring equipment than currently exists, Edwards said. Once up and running, the stations will send real time data via satellite to EPA officials, who will make the data available to the public online. The monitors also contain two types of air filters that are collected and mailed to EPA’s data center in Alabama.

The new stations are expected to be operational by the end of the week, Edwards said. The agency said it does not expect to see any spike in readings on the monitors, which Edwards said measure all forms of radiation that might exist after a nuclear event like the one in Japan.

Officials in Oregon — which has two monitoring stations — held a news conference on Wednesday to reassure the public they were monitoring developments and prepared to respond.

Officials in all western states have said they do not expect to see any harmful levels of radiation reach the mainland, which is about 5,000 miles from Japan.

Radiation Detected In US West Coast

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: I’m appalled anyone doubts the U.S. government. Breathe shallow! In the meantime, enjoy the Japanese government propaganda toon for children. Am I actually still breathing? – SJH

Nuclear Reactor Explained By Poop And Farts & Nuclear Reactor Boy’s Tummy Ache

Link to original article below…

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110316/ap_on_re_us/us_west_coast_radiation_monitors

US Military Buys Gulf Of Mexico Seafood For Resale To Our Troops

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February 7, 2011: Mary Foster / The Washington Post – February 6, 2011

Sales of Gulf of Mexico seafood are getting a boost from the military after being hammered by last year’s BP oil spill, which left consumers fearing that the water’s bounty had been tainted. Ten products, including fish, shrimp, oysters, crab cakes, and packaged Cajun dishes such as jambalaya and shrimp etouffee are being promoted at 72 base commissaries along the East Coast, said Milt Ackerman, president of Military Solutions Inc., which is supplying seafood to the businesses.

Gulf seafood sales fell sharply after a BP gulf well blew out in April, spewing millions of gallons of oil into the sea. Consumers have long feared that fish, oysters and other products could be tainted by oil and chemicals used to fight the spill, although extensive testing has indicated the food is safe. The perception has lingered – along with the poor sales.

Bobby Barnett, a shrimper in Pass Christian, Miss., said he was glad the U.S. government was embracing domestic and not imported seafood. “Every sale helps us out, and we need some help to come back,” Barnett said. “You would have thought they would have been buying U.S. seafood all along.”

The Defense Department-run Defense Commissary Agency – known as DeCa – sells groceries to military personnel, reservists, retirees and their families at cost plus a 5 percent surcharge. The stores have emphasized healthy diets as part of first lady Michelle Obama‘s “Let’s Move” fitness and health campaign. “What fits in with that better than seafood?” Ackerman said.

The gulf seafood promotion begins Tuesday at Belle Chasse Naval Air Station, La., where chefs from the military and New Orleans restaurants will prepare gulf delicacies. Some 20,000 people have commissary privileges at the air base just outside New Orleans.

“We’re doing dishes that the home cook can take home and cook easily,” said Chef Tenney Flynn of GW Fins’ French Quarter restaurant, who will prepare black drum with tomato sauce. Commissary shoppers will be able to take home the recipes.

The commissaries deal was brokered by Ready 4 Takeoff, a group that has worked since Hurricane Katrina to help the Gulf Coast, and Navy Secretary Ray Mabus. Mabus was appointed by President Barack Obama in June to oversee the Gulf’s recovery from BP’s massive oil spill, which began in April.

DeCa spokesman Kevin Robinson said the agency viewed promoting Gulf seafood as an opportunity to expand its focus on domestic seafood and broaden choices for commissary shoppers. The Gulf buys are not receiving special funding but are part of a DeCa revamp of its purchasing.

The New Orleans Fish House, a wholesaler that buys from fishermen at dockside, is making an initial shipment of 10,000 pounds of Gulf seafood to the commissaries, said Mike Ketchum, director of retail sales. Some will be packaged frozen shrimp products under the label of famed chef Emeril Lagasse.

“Compared to our existing customers, that is on the lower end,” Ketchum said. “But we see it taking off quickly. They could certainly become one of our biggest customers.”

So far, 72 of the 249 U.S. commissaries have committed to stocking Gulf seafood, but more could join the program. Before, a large majority of the seafood stocked at commissaries was imported, Ketchum said. Progressive Grocer magazine ranked the commissary chain as the nation’s 17th largest grocery chain.

“That’s true of all the grocery industry, but now our government is stepping up and saying they will use domestic product,” he said. The boost couldn’t come at a better time. The New Orleans Fish House, for instance, was selling $40 million in seafood annually before the spill. Now, Ketchum said, the company is doing about $10 million.

A recent Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board survey found 70 percent of people are still nervous about eating Gulf seafood, said executive director Ewell Smith. “And that’s with all the testing that has been done and is still being done,” he said.

Some commissary customers have been just as nervous, but not enough to pull seafood from the shelves, Ackerman said. “We believe that will fade quickly,” he said.

KLFY Eyewitness News: US Government Lies About Gulf Seafood Safety

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: And our tax dollars subsidize the poisoning of our own children! – SJH

Link to original article below…

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/06/AR2011020603941.html?hpid=topnews